Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Yard Tutorial By Sarah Topps

My Seven year old Daughter, Sarah did a Wonderful Tutorial on the yard she & her big sister created for the Spring Fling Contest on the Greenleaf Dollhouse forum. Sarah did most of the work on the yard. To create your own wonderful yard scene click Here

You can see the tutorial below also:

 After that has been decided, cut the card board down to the size you  want and then trace the footprint of the house. Next, paint the entire  yard on the outside of the footprint (You would adhere the base after  it is all dry.

You would paint the entire base a light green (Sarah's paint is apple barrel "Leaf Green" Color). After that dries, you will pour a dime size amount of hunter green color paint. Dip your brush in it and then wipe off access paint till the brush is almost dry. Then you will pounce this (alternating in different directions so that there won't 
be a pattern)

 Next, take your brown paint and squeeze out a dime size amount. Dip your brush in it and then brush off access paint till the brush is 
almost dry. Then you will pounce this (alternating in different directions again so that there won't be a pattern). You may not wish to have much of the brown as you do the greens. 

 Next, Sarah decided she wanted a "stone" walkway. So she took out the  stone pattern stencil.  First, you have to paint the area Gray. After  it dries, then you lay the stencil on top. Then you would take your  dark brown paint and dry brush the outer edges of each stone and dab a  little in the middle. Then after that dries, you will take a lighter gray, and again, dry brush each stone. Sarah did this color only two times randomly in each stone. When that dries, then you can remove the stencil and viola, you have a walkway.

Next, with the help of big sister Rachel, make a straight glue line 
with hot glue and then add some green poly fiber on each side. When this dried, Rachel cut the loose fiber and then Sarah took the tacky glue and put a drop on top of the fiber. She then took Hot Pink colored foam and put that on the tacky glue and now the yard has flowers to help dress up the entry way.

Next, glue the house to the base and add the Green Poly Fiber around  the house. You can even add a fence to enclose the yard like Sarah did.

They had so much fun joining in the Spring Fling Contest fun This year!!

Thanks for reading my blog!
Tracy Topps

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Conny Dungen Dollhouse Blossom Tree

Conny Dungen has so many wonderful Miniature items! I was on her website a couple of weeks ago and was looking at her "Titanic" Miniature scene again and while I was there, I came across a Wonderful Tutorial she has on her website on how to make this Gorgeous Blossom Tree. While you are there looking at the tutorial to use for your own miniature house, you HAVE to look at her different miniature settings that she created. She is truly and Amazing Artist!!

To see the Blossom Tree Tutorial Click Here

To see her different Miniature Scenes, Click Here

Monday, June 15, 2009

Help Peter Facinelli! For Those Who Tweet

Okay, I am a Fan of the actor Peter Facinelli . Some of us in the dollhouse community has been talking about a bet he has made. Peter Facinelli has recently accepted a bet with one of his friends named Rob, from a Developement company. Rob bet that Peter couldn't get 500,000 followers in a week. We only have until Midnight, Pacific time on June 19th, so be sure to spread the word. To add him click below:

The search for 500K followers on Twitter

Just in case you don't know who he is, that means you have not seen Twilght (He play Dr. Carlisle Culle )He is also in the new Showtime show Nurse Jackie (as Dr. Cooper). To see more movies he has played in, click here .

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Beacon Hill Dollhouse Day 2

Well, I spent Day Number two, adding the ceiling lights, sanding and varnishing the floors, wallpapering the walls and adding the staircases. It's starting to look like a home.

1st Floor entry hallway:

2nd floor hallway:

Third floor hallway:

The third floor wall is wallpapered but not added to the house yet. That is the end of Day #2

Beacon Hill Dollhouse Day 1

Though I started this some weeks ago, I am going to Blog them by Day here since that is how I have my Albums set up on my computer. Some Days, I may post more than one day at a time BUT, that particular post will be labeled by what day number I was actually working on at that particular time.

The Beacon Hill kit can seem like a daunting project, especially if this is your first dollhouse kit ever. Please know that if you follow the instructions, your kit can look as beautiful as the one that shows on the box cover.

It does take time and patience and a lot of Chocolate!! But, because I am no longer eating my cookies N stuff like I used to while I build ('Cause this year I decided to change my eating and work out habits) I went through LOTS of chewing gum .

I always use a highlighter to highlight the step I have completed. By doing this, if I have to walk away for a moment (or day), I know exactly where I left off at. The Foundation (Step A) walls & Floors (Step B) went by quickly on Day #1.

The thing that took the most of my time on Day one was the staircases!! It took Hours to remove & sand and then assemble it all. I always add wallpaper & wood floors as I build and this is something you should do anyway to all of the hallways because once the stairs are assembled and glued in, you will not be able to access most of the areas easily. The stairs for the 1st floor took me 3 hours!!! That's right, Three hours to complete. The second floor was not as hard but it still took 2 hours. The third floor was just the railings.

You can see the progress pictures of the stairs as I started. This was a part I was stuck on because this is not pictured in the instructions. The rest is simple to figure out since the instructions has pictures of it LOL. I am a visual learner and know so many of you are too so here are the Pictures of the very first part. this is how it looks front and back:

This is a picture of right before I started working on the 2nd floor staircase:

Most of these rooms will take 2 wood sheets (which is quite expensive) because of the depth & width of the rooms. Also, you will need at least 4 sheets of wallpaper per room since some of these rooms are a nice size.

After I assembled the stairs and stained them and sanded them again and then stained them again, I called it quits for Day #1 . I guess I did not take as many pictures of that days work as I thought LOL. I was too busy working to snap pictures LOL.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

"How To" Create New Miniatures

Do you want to try your hand at making some miniatures yourself? Why not take a look at some of the Tutorials we have posted on the Greenleaf Dollhouse Forum. In this topic alone, we have links on how to create Lights for your house, Books, Flowers, blinds and even how to create a Thatched roof. There are many more things listed so why not take a look and see what you can create! Click Here for the Tutorials.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Greenleaf Dollhouses Spring Fling 2009

Well the results are in! My Girls Won 1st place in the Greenleaf Dollhouse Spring Fling Contest 2009!! They won a Aster Cottage & Everyone who entered is going to get a 144 scale version of the Loganberry Mill!

To read more about the contest and to see the Winners, click here .

To see pictures of ALL entries, click here & for kids entries, click here.

Why have I been so quiet?!!!

Well, I know a lot of you noticed that in the Month of May, I got really, really quiet. I did not stop doing minis, I was not hiding in a cave, I did not go on vacation (I wish) I have just been very busy with Real life stuff .

The month started out pretty good with my mother in law came up for a visit and we had such a GREAT time with her! My girls miss her so much because she lives in Florida so they don't get to see her much. My husband misses her too and I do wish she lived closer because I really do believe she and I would be really good friends. She is so quiet & calm. My husband is like that which is why I have always been so drawn to him. Anyway, she is a real joy to be with. My son who is now 20 years old came up the day before my Mother in law left to tell us he was about to propose to his Girlfriend.

They had been seeing each other for about a year so it was expected. Then the following week, we found out they were getting married in a week
They did get Married May 15th and I am now a Mother In Law. My girls are so happy too cause the Love Shelby too (she used to baby sit them sometimes).

My new daughter in law is sweet and pretty and the person my son loves so of course we all love her too. We have been knowing her and her Mom for about 5 years. My son moved back to Wisconsin after he had been living in Chicago with my parents for the past 2 years. I missed him so much and I am happy to have him closer to us now.

During all of this, my girls and husband has been sick with some virus and I was only sick for a day with it. My oldest daughter has been being bullied by a group of 5 girls in school and I have been back and forth at school dealing with that too. I missed 16 days of my P90X workout during this period of time and was frustrated because I had just started Phase 3 of it (the final phase) and I was so close to my big reveal day. (Did I mention my TV decided to break the week my son got married which started my work out delinquency)?

I was disappointed but snapped out of it quickly because I know in order for me to get what I wanna get, I gotta do what I gotta do to get it so, Monday I started Phase 1 of P90X Classic. Before then, I was doing P90X Lean version. I have lost a total of 31 pounds since January 23rd, which is when I started walking 5 days a week. I started P90X Lean March 30th and before then, I was just walking at least 5 days a week and sometimes every day.

This week I am so sore (All over again) but I am determined to be healthy again. I can not believe I let myself get so out of shape ( 3 years ago my husband & I worked out at a local gym at least 3 times a week sometimes more) but instead of thinking of where I was, I stay focused on where I wanna be. This has been a very difficult year for my family and myself. My Husbands Uncle died of Pancreatic Cancer in November, my father was diagnosed with Cancer last fall and had surgery in January which was successful, I am so Thankful to say! Then my mother started getting ill and I was in Chicago with her too. Then my son got sick. I live about 1.5 hours away from my parents & brothers so I have been doing a lot of driving back and forth.

All of this has been going on just when I decided in December 2008 that 2009 was gonna be my year to find the real me again. Do the things I love to do, learn to have more fun and enjoy my family & friends because time is precious & not promised to no one.

I have been quiet about the weight loss because, when I look in the mirror, I can not see the change, and I was afraid of failure. I can see it in my clothes (they are falling off and too loose without a belt). Who can afford a new wardrobe now-a-days, LOL? Not me :P

In May, I went to the Doctor for my physical and I told my Doctor that I had lost 21 pounds (at that time) since January. He looked at my chart and said, "Don't sell yourself short, since I saw you in October, you have lost 27 ponds". I was just floored and that is when I started noticing more that, I guess I am looking like a different Tracy when I look in the Mirror. My friends have also been noticing the weight loss and have been commenting about it because I did not tell anyone I was doing anything (afraid of failure and also just shy about talking about myself).

But alas, I am short (5'3") and I would like to get down to at least 135 pounds (so I won't be considered obease) and I still have a ways to go to get there so I am hoping that by August, I'll be there. Meanwhile, I have been working on a Beacon Hill for Roberta who now has about 13 of my houses. She has been such a friend to me in the past years since we first met. I am hoping to be finished with her house THIS month LOL.

I'll get those pictures posted soon and maybe (If I'll stop being shy), I'll post new recent pictures of myself..... I don't know. I am kinda shy but we'll see.

I hope you all are doing well and Thank you for taking the time to read my blog and Thank you to all of my Miniature Friends who always encourage me, inspire me and comfort me and let me know when I have been missed! It really means a lot to me.
~ Tracy Topps

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

New Dollhouse Creation "The Chestnut"

Every year (sometimes more than once) I try to customize the Greenleaf kit called the Primrose. I always try and make it different from what is on the box and from what I have done in the past.

This is what my newest Primrose cottage looks like:

I call it "The Chestnut" and that is what the sign above the flower box says too. I did not add the upstairs attic room but just left this with one room to decorate with high ceilings.

I created 2 hand made floral items on this one. The first is a rose bush that has white & magenta roses blooming and the second is a cute vine with small blue flowers on it. There is even a butterfly stopping to smell those flowers on the vine. All Stones, Stucco, Bricks and shingles were each hand sculpted and hand painted several different paint "washes" to create a realistic look of real stones, shingles & bricks. I sculpted a "herringbone" brick pattern by the entry way which take much more time to do but it really give the outside some "extra" character. The Door (that opens and close) & the window, is an upgrade from what came with the original kit. The aged door knobs & door knocker, window box and outside coach light were hand painted to give a nice look of aged copper with a verdigris looking finish.

The insides are painted a soft gray (which has a blue look to it) and all wood is painted a nice warm dark chocolate color. The floor has the look of real stone. This creation has been electrified which means all lights (inside hanging light and outside coach light) light up and the two outlets really works too so you can add lamps as you decorate this room. You can have it as an office, shop or a small cottage.

This creation is 1" scale. The size of this creation is 16" H x 13 1/2" D x 13 1/2" W
This is a picture of what the basic kit looks like after it has been assembled:

To Purchase this item, Click Here

To see pictures of other Primrose dollhouse kits I have done in the past, click here
To see a tutorial on how to create a stone floor click here